tv Martin Bashir MSNBC January 29, 2013 4:00pm-5:00pm EST
time has come for common sense, comprehensive immigration reform. the time is now. we define ourselves as a nation of immigrants. that's who we are in our bones. it's really important for us to remember our history. unless you're one of the first americans, a native american, you came from some place else p.else. somebody brought you. we have to fix the system. we have to make sure that every business and every worker in america is playing by the same set of rules. if congress is unable to move forward in a timely fashion, i will send up a bill based on my proposal and insist that they vote on it right away. thank you. god bless you, and god bless the united states of america. ♪
the time is now. those are the words of the president in las vegas doubling down on an immigration overhaul. yes, the president has just wrapped up a speech outlining his priorities for comprehensive immigration reform embracing the principles laid out by a bipartisan group of senators on monday and bringing back a campaign-style flair. >> the differences are dwirndlidwirnd l dwindling. a broad consensus is emerging and where a call for action can now be heard coming from all across america. i'm here today because the time has come for common sense comprehensive immigration reform. the time is now. [ cheers and applause ] >> perhaps knowing the quickest route to republican opposition is to put his name on it, the president did not introduce his own legislation. instead calling for quick action on the senate framework.
>> we need congress to act, and not just on the dream act. we need congress to act on a comprehensive approach that finally deals with the 11 million undocumented immigrants who are in the country right now. that's what we need. >> but even with key republicans on board, the plan's path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants faces deep resistance. starting with one of the architects, marco rubio. >> the only way that i know to incentivize the enforcement part is to say that the green card stuff doesn't even begin to happen until the enforcement happens first. >> if you don't get enforcement first or securing the borders first, is that a deal killer for you -- >> oh, absolutely. >> and it's that security requirement that could doom the plan itself. with confusion over just how much power a border security panel will have over the path to citizenship. despite the fact that the
president has deported nearly as many undocumented immigrants in four years as george w. bush managed in eight, republicans are not likely to say they are ever satisfied with his handling of border security. according to the rush limbaughs on the right, it's not about border security, not about the lives of undocumented workers who are here already. it's all one big conspiracy of moochers. >> democrat party needs a permanent underclass. they need a certain number of voters constantly in economic distress, constantly in need of assistance from the government, and open borders is a great way to employed an influx. >> though no one asked him, limbaugh said he'd support blanket amnesty if so-called illegals can't vote for 25 years. he apparently didn't get the
memo to use tonally sensitive language around the topic. in any case today, limbaugh's guest today, marco rubio, may not like that idea of barring new latino voters. >> obama's not going to be president forever. as long as the next four years may seem, won't be president forever. we have to write laws with that in mind as well. >> i'm sure the question of the next president is never far from senator rubio's mind. let's get to our panel now. in los angeles democratic congressman tony cardenas of california, and here in new york machines political analyst david corn. congressman, you are one of 11 children. your father was a farm worker who came here legally from mexico. can you describe to our audience how important it is that this nation deal with the issue of 11 million undocumented immigrants? >> well, it sounds like 11 for 11. i'm proud to say my parents were
immigrants. in one generation each one of our families when all 11 of us became adults, we ended up paying more in taxes every year than my father and mother would pay in taxes as an immigrant family with a first and second grade education. i think that's a perfect example of why this is important. the bess they can we can do for the economy is to get this immigration -- comprehensive immigration reform right and get it done now. >> indeed. david, despite what we have just heard from the congressman who is very enthusiastic, rush limbaugh says the government's dole is what lures immigrants here. take a listen. >> i have seen a number of research, scholarly research data, which says that vast majority of arriving immigrants today come here because they believe that government is the source of prosperity. >> so that heaving mass of poison says that the borders are literally stacked full of people coming to take entitlements and
benefits. >> yaen time yanytime you hear word scholarly research data and rush limbaugh together you know something is wrong. the congressman just told us a very shorthand story of his own family. obviously that one anecdote and many others we know of disprove what rush limbaugh is saying. but i think the extreme misuse of facts, which is not unusual for him, is also a sign of desperation because this is going to -- i think this has and will continue to tear apart the republican party and the conservative movement. there are some republicans for political reasons and for some legitimate policy reasons, value reasons, want to do something about it and see the common sense approach. the business community obviously wants to take care of this for their own interests but yet you still have many who, you know, want this to be an english first country, mainly a white country. they don't like the changing demographics. they don't want to deal with it. to them it's basically cultural
war, and they will put up a strong resistance, and you saw it reflected in john boehner's statement. he's very unenthusiastic because i think he figures that his caucus is still majority opposed to this type of reform. >> and to that point, congressman, we know republicans have been getting guidance on the very language to use around this issue. and they have been told avoid words like aliens and phrases like anchor babies but the president doesn't seem to have that problem at all. >> unless you're one of the first americans, a native american, you came from some place else. somebody brought you. the polish, russians, chinese, japanese, the west indians. before they were us, they were them. >> sir, this is a much bigger issue an a border. this is about who we are as a nation. >> absolutely. we've always been a nation of immigrants, and like the president said accurately, unless you're truly a native american and you have been here
for 100 if not thousands of years, you're an immigrant person. you have immigration as part of your past and i would hope people would be proud of the fact they came from somewhere else. because in this country it's a country of opportunity and with all due respect to rush limbaugh, this is a country of second chances. he's had his issues. god bless him. i hope he's passed those things, but i really wish that people like him would stop with the vitriol and just look at it for what it is. if he cares about the economy, if republicans, democrats, independents care about the economy, this is the best thing that you can do for the economy. >> but congressman, rush limbaugh says he's concerned about the law. he's concerned about not rewarding people who come here illegally. that's his position. he says any kind of path to citizenship is rewarding wrongdoing. >> whether you like the laws that are around, you know, drug laws in this country, what have you, it's my understanding, correct me if i'm wrong, if rush limbaugh violated some
tremendously -- violated some laws in this country, it's my understanding he didn't spend a day in jail. >> this is correct. >> my point is it's not about picking on him but i think the analogy is correct in using. when people use that vitriol and try to say they broke the law, gosh darn, it you broke the law and you didn't spend a day in jail. hopefully he paid his fines and hopefully he has it in his being to know not to do that again and to try to fix his life. with all due respect when you're talking about people who have been here from all over the world who have toed the line, who have just been working hard, living in the shadows, for them to get a second chance, i can guarantee you this, they're going to work even harder. they're going to kiss this ground that they walk on. they're going to make sure that their children study hard, work hard, respect this country, pledge allegiance to the flag, go to war for this country, which they already do as undocumenteds. the fact of the matter is this is an issue of our country moving forward and getting out of one of the worst economies
we've ever seen. now is the time for us to set ourselves right as a country and 11 million people are going to help us move forward in an economic, positive way. >> but i think it is also, other than just an economic issue, a cultural identity issue. and clearly we saw in the last election there are people on the conservative republican side who are having difficulty coming to terms with the changing face and the changing content of america. if you judge people by their cultural, their background, and their skin color. and that's something that's going to be played out a lot. i think one thing the president did that was very, very smart was to put down a marker. he said, okay, it's up to you in congress to work this out and i think that's the right thing to do, not get too involved in the legislative muck right away, but if you can't do this, meaning if you house republicans can't do this -- >> i will send a bill. >> i will send a bill and i will demand an up and down vote. he probably won't get it. but he will have a marker, very
easy point to make as he continues to deal with this. say i sent them a bill and they wouldn't vote on it. that will stick around for years and years amongst the community of people who care about this. they don't even get a vote on it because house republicans can't make common cause with even the senate republicans on this issue. >> indeed. david corn, whose wife is from holland, tony car dane naday na congressman, thank you. >> if anyone thinks gun safety can get done, say hello to the 113th congress. stay with us. >> obama's got republicans in a compromising position and now he's ready to push his package through congress. ♪ push it, push it good ♪ push it real good ♪ you know my heart burns for you... ♪
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eric cantor may be an unrepentant partisan and perpetual opponent of the president, but he's no conservative, at least not according to heritage action. the group, an offshoot of a very influential conservative think tank grades conservative on their purity by a number of issues, and they definitely don't grade on a curve. for instance, their average score for house republicans, 66%. eric cantor, a mere 55%. so how do you earn a top grade with heritage action? well, let south carolina's jeff duncan demonstrate. >> madam secretary, you let the consulate become a death trap. and that's national security malpractice. >> joining us now is clarence page, a columnist with "the
chicago tribune" and nbc's luke russert live for us on capitol hill. welcome to you both. clarence, what hope is there for gun control, immigration, climate change if true conservatives have to be to the right of eric cantor? >> well, not a lot of hope you would think. it's a real problem for those who want to get any kind of progressive action through at all or any kind of compromise. there are very few people left in the house, especially on the republican side, who feel obl e obliged to their constituency as far as their views are concerned. they feel more obliged to the folks who are funding their campaigns or funding the campaigns of their potential opponents in a future primary fight. so it's gotten to be a very cynical politics that i'm afraid heritage has become a part of moving from being a research institution into being a lobbying force. >> i'm assuming clarence you include heritage alongside with the nra and others? >> certainly then ra has become
an organization whose members are gun owners but the money comes from the gun industry. >> right. >> heritage didn't quite there yet, but they do get a lot of contributions from corporations that benefit from their work. >> okay. now, luke, the gang of eight's mike lee, who owns a 99% score from heritage, won't now back the group's immigration plan. last year they saw heritage threaten to score an amendment banning high capacity clips. what makes grading systems like this one so powerful? >> well, i think primarily is that if you fail to get a good grade with heritage action, you are essentially a target for a primary. if you look at the way they do this, it's a very effective grading system in terms of trying to appeal to conservative media and to conservative grassroots activists. you can say that someone like maybe not eric cantor, but someone in more of a district where he doesn't have the financial backing that eric cantor might have, oh, my god,
they're only with us 55% of the time, they're not pure, they're not true. we've seen, especially in primaries in the united states senate, look at folks like todd akin, folks like mourdock in indiana, christine o'donnell in delaware. you see the strength of the grassroots. that's why the grading systems are so effective, because they put somebody on a target list for grassroots conservative organizations to take out in a primary, and if you go to their website, it's very slick. it's very well-done. very easy to click on somebody. you can see six or seven votes, and the way in which they penalize people for a vote that ordinarily would just be a common thing to take, for example something that might not be completely offset, let's say you're from a coastal area and you're supporting something -- some government money to go there for rebuilding if you get hit for a storm. that doesn't align. sorry if you're from louisiana, from florida. done. you might be the most conservative person of all time but because you voted to help out your district, you're going to get an "x" right there.
it's really quite remarkable. >> it's absolutely incredible. clarence, heritage action is what's known as a social welfare organization. that means it can and has spent money on races. so what happens if you don't have the money, as luke was saying, of an eric cantor, and you incur the anger of heritage because, say, for example, you think high capacity clips and assault weapons are not okay. what happens then? >> well, a number of things you can do as a candidate or as an incumbent. one of them is to get yourself on tv like you just did with that congressman from south carolina. "washington post" calls it a money blurt where you yell "you lie "ytion " in the middle of t president's address to congress or say something else outrageous like michele bachmann and other folks are known for. every time they make headlines, they get contributions because we're in the internet age where all you got to do is go on the
web and click to make a contribution. so there is a certain benefit to not just voting in the extreme but talking in the extreme. >> it was me stupidly believing it was all about responding to your constituents. gentlemen, thank you. coming up, a tennessee state senator who wants to calibrate children's grades and determine that they will provide a certain amount of money in terms of what individual families can get from government. you won't believe this one. stay with us. look what mommy is having.
mommy's having a french fry. yes she is, yes she is. [ bop ] [ male announcer ] could've had a v8. 100% vegetable juice, with three of your daily vegetable servings in every little bottle. at this moment the senate is voting to confirm senator sgron kerry as the next secretary of state. a former nominee for president, kerry brings a lifetime of experience to the job including 18 glers the senate where he
currently serves as chairman of the foreign relations committee. the same committee before which he testified in 1971 as an anti-war veteran returning from his second tour of duty in vietnam where he was awarded three purple hearts. joining us now i'm delighted to say is mike viqueira live with us from the capitol. mike, apparently there's not a lot of love from the texas delegation so far. is that right? >> reporter: that's right, and that roll call is ongoing but everybody has an ear out to hear who, in fact, is going to vote no. i think the over/under among wags in the press corps had it at about four. this is going to be an overwhelming vote in support of john kerry, of course, a senate colleague of all these members. the irony continues after the race in 2004 and all the attacks and all the vitriol that were leveled his way. but you're right the texas delegation, both senators, the freshman ted cruz and john cornyn, the number two ranking republican in the senate, have
voted no as well as jim inhofe, the very conservative member from oklahoma. that may have something to do with john kerry's stance very forthright in favor of doing everything he can in terms of international treaties in terms of using his position both here in the senate and prospectively at the state department to fight clay mat change. jim inhofe obviously one very high-profile climate change skeptic. >> this was expected to go smoothly and the nomination hearing did, but now senator kerry has some pretty big challenges, doesn't he? we have north korea setting off or threatening to set off another nuclear test. we have the problem of iran, china, russia, syria, egypt today. where on earth does the new secretary of state begin? >> reporter: he obviously has some big pumps to fill, if you will. secretary of state clinton traveled more than any other secretary of state in history. i don't think this is a case of,
you know, who batted cleanup after babe ruth because john kerry, as you outlined in your introduction, has the credentials, has been in the senate for so main years, was a highly decorated veteran in vietnam and is, in fact, a child of the foreign service who has lived overseas as a child with his patients in berlin and switzerland and some other areas as well. it's the same old hotspots that have been in the past-war era beginning with the east. syria now the hot spot. what to do in egypt as the situation and civil unrest continues there as well. obviously the administration has tried to re-emphasize or at least turn its attention now and emphasize east asia and particularly china. senator kerry, soon to be secretary kerry presumably, is going to be a taking a forthright stance against intellectual property theft. that's something he's on the record as fighting against as well. i also mention climate change as well. the middle east, a whole host of problems, no shortage there, of
course, martin, challenges facing prospective secretary kerry. >> it's probably going to happen in the next few minutes. he was taking slaps on the back right there on the floor. nbc's mike viqueira. as always, thanks so much. stay with us, the day's "top lines" are coming up. stay with us, the day's "top ♪ ♪
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so i can get three times the coverage. [ manager 2 ] it's like working in a giant sandbox. with all these huge toys. and with the fastest push-to-talk... i can keep track of them all. [ male announcer ] upgrade to the new "done" with access to the fastest push-to-talk and three times the coverage. now when you buy one kyocera duraxt rugged phone for $69.99, you'll get four free. other offers available. visit a sprint store, or call 855-878-4biz. fair and balanced is the catch phrase. of course, we all know the catch. here are today's "top lines." spare us the crocodile tears. >> disappointing interview on 60 minutes last night. i didn't learn anything. >> going to be a true journalist, you cannot make friends with the rock stars. >> questions like, oh, are you guys mad at each other or what? >> trampling on your right to keep and bear arms is simply not enough for this president. >> what, are you going to cry now? >> what's his next target? the first amendment, of course. >> come on cry baby, cry.
>> according to the anoubted one shth the reason why he's failed is because some of us have dared to speak out against his agenda. >> you don't know what it's like to be me out here for you. >> fox news and i stand out like sore thumbs. the rest of media is in a tank. >> hello. >> fox news is challenging the president and his policies and that's what the media is supposed to do. >> think mcfly. >> the only media organization on this planet that has delivered fair and balanced coverage. >> back off, man. i'm a scientist. >> he has dictatorial tendencies. >> only dictators do thing likes that. >> there are very few of the great dictators left. all the best ones are now gone. >> sorry, mr. president. we're going to continue to do our part to save america from your radical agenda. >> you insulted him a little bit, you got a little out of order yourself. >> the president doesn't like what we do at fox news. >> which team do you play for? >> fox news has the best reporters in america and the best commentators and thinkers in america.
>> are you crying? >> president has all the democrats, the entire mainstream media. >> are you crying? are you crying? >> without a free fox, there's not a free america. >> there's no crying. there's no crying in baseball! >> fair and balanced means something. >> let's get right to it. we're joined by msnbc contributor joy reid, managing editor of thegrio.com. and "washington post's" political reporter nia-malika henderson and the great ron meier, spokesman for american majority action. thank you for joining us. joy, the republicans have always said they are for limited government. >> right. >> are they also for unlimited whining, crying? >> i think the decent thing to do is for us to all chip in and buy blankets for everyone. everyone gets a blankie. i have never seen so much whining and moaning and crying. it's pathetic. the conservative movement has always supposedly been the macho movement in american politics,
but now they are the whining movement in american politics. their entire indictment of barack obama is, he's mean! that's pathetic. >> right. >> are you serious? >> yes, she is serious, ron. we just saw one of our fellow conservatives talking about the president's plan to outlaw fox news. actually all the president pointed out and i'm quoting was that if a republican member of congress is not punished by fox news or by rush limbaugh for working with a democrat on a bill of common interest, then you'll see more of them doing it. which i don't know, ron, sounds pretty obvious to me, but are you also losing sleep at night because you're afraid the president wants to take away your fox news and your guns? >> you know, i'm very happy to come on msnbc and say thank god for fox news. the fact of the matter is without fox news we'd still think that benghazi, that that attack, that terrorist attack happened because of a video. without katherine and special report and the hard news people. by the way, they have more hard news people than msnbc, cnn, and
everybody else -- >> sorry, ron, ron, ron, i accept your analysis on benghazi. don't forget also we wouldn't have had the invented simultaneous video feed that they claimed on fox news was occurring and that people in the white house were ignoring. so let's not be entirely disingenuous. >> we don't know because no one in the media will ask the president and hillary clinton -- >> the press spokesman has been asked and they have all said there was no such thing. n nia-malika -- >> where was the president during benghazi? >> let other people contribute. there have been momentous changes going on lately at fox news, especially the departure of reality tv personality sarah palin. let's hear what conservative intellectual david frum says about this. >> who says he's conservative? >> in tandem with the fact that glenn beck is taken off. as they have backed away from hip and other characters -- the whole network is an exercise in going too far but as they retreated from those who went
farthest, i think this is a milestone as well. >> i was under the impression it wasn't possible to embarrass fox news but maybe it is. >> one of the things that was most interesting is fox news was sort of against itself in the last minutes when they were calling ohio and karl rove almost himself had a bit of a tantrum saying that there was no way that ohio could have gone for president obama, megan kelly had to go back there and talk to the folks who actually had the facts and say, in fact, that ohio did, in fact, go to president obama. i think there is some soul searching going on there. i think that's correct. in 2011 with that exit of glen beck, who, of course, went on to his own network. and now with sarah palin, kind of the declining fortunes of the tea party and this inability of the tea party and the conservative right to find purchase and find a wider audience. you know, rush limbaugh's power is in this called 20 million viewer -- listeners that he has.
i don't know if it's 20 million, 15 million. it might be 2 million. but i think democrats have been very expert at putting rush limbaugh and fox news at the head of the party, and you haven't seen much push back from republicans. in fact, you see ruby, of course, going out there today and sort of going to rush limbaugh and offering his immigration plan. >> you're going to go after fox news for having a ton of viewer. the competitor show to this has about four times as many viewers. then you're going to go after fox news for making the first prediction on ohio. so, yeah, they had karl rove -- >> ron, ron, ron -- >> you can go after fox news all you want -- >> you're hyperventilating. nobody is going after fox. i'm just trying to address the facts and they are as follows. mr. karl rove got it disastrously and diametrically wrong -- >> and joe who also works for fox got it exactly right.
>> joe wasn't on screen at the time. >> final word to you, joy. >> i think it is true, fox news has a lot of viewers. part of the problem is their average age is 103 and they're all sitting around believing in their deepest of hearts because the experts, the crack journalists over there, were telling them that romney was going to win. >> that romney had it sewn up. >> that all the polls were skewed, that reality was not reality. >> bureau of labor statistics skewed. >> all skewed. and all the data had a liberal bias. if they just skewed. properly, people would understand truth. >> i don't understand this. >> one minute, ron. >> the glass bubble was burst by the election. and so the reality that's rushing in on conservatives now is that most people don't want to voucherize medicare, most people don't want to cut school lunches. people like social security and you know what, darn it, people are okay with immigrants. >> guess what? they elected this president and then re-elected him. our thanks to joy reid, n nia-malika henderson and the great ron meier.
next, get good grades, junior, or the family won't eat this month. the tennessee state senator who has ignited a firestorm. stay with us. [ male announcer ] when was the last time something made your jaw drop? campbell's has 24 new soups has ignited a firestorm. over a. ♪ from jammin' jerk chicken, to creamy gouda bisque. see what's new from campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do.
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bayer aspirin was the first thing the emts gave me. now, i'm on a bayer aspirin regimen. [ male announcer ] be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. [ woman ] learn from my story. before we continue, we just want to make a note that the u.s. senate has just confirmed john kerry as the next secretary of state in a vote of 94-3. well done him. for the republican -- for the modern republican party, beating up on the poor and powerless has become something of a high art. just so happens, however, that one of the party's lowest ranking lawmakers is also one of its greatest masters in the art of abuse. his name is stacy campfield and he's a state senator from tennessee. we talked to him about his latest project, a bill which would cut welfare assistance by 30% for households where the children fail to make satisfactory academic progress.
we're specifically focused on this penalty of increasing the withdrawal by 30% of the amount of money that's paid in temporary assistance to needy families. what i want to know is how will doing that help these children? >> well, what we're seeing in tennessee and probably across the nation from the e-mails i'm getting is that we have a three-part stool for education. it's one part the schools, one part the teachers, and one part the family. probably the most important part is the family. unfortunate unfortunately, we have some families who don't care if their kids get an education or stay in school. what we're say something if your kid is quitting school, not showing up, showing up at 11:00 in his pajamas, that's not a prepared kid to get an education. we need to do something to motivate these parents to realize how important this education is. unfortunately, the only tool we have left is these -- this cash payment that we make to these
families. >> but you already penalize families if the children don't attend school. but this is specifically to do with children's grade performance. i want to ask you again, how are you helping a child by saying here pass this test and if you don't succeed, well, then you're family for the next month maybe won't eat? >> well, actually there's nothing in this that talks about food stamps. there's nothing in this about anything having to do with food or housing -- >> it's -- again, it's $185 for a family of two children, and if your proposal is embraced, that means that that family would have that reduced by $60. a considerable percentage of that amount of money. again, i have to ask you, how does asking a child to pass a test help that family given that if the child fails, the family may struggle even more seriously
than they already are struggling? >> first off, i'm not setting the bar like the kids have to become rocket surgeons. we're talking bare bones, these kids are passing up to the next grade. you know, you want to talk a problem, generational poverty, and to me if you stay, hey, we don't care if you get an education, if you quit that's fine -- >> senator -- >> we're not going to get out of that. >> senator, i understand very carefully and i have read everything that you have said on this issue, so i do understand your position on generational poverty. but here is an issue. these children that you're targeting are often already victims of neglect. they have often been the subject of abuse within their own households. they have no control whatsoever over the circumstances in which they live. how is a 5-year-old child supposed to perform even at the bare minimum that you expect and if the child doesn't you penalize the child. how is that possible given the fact the child has no control
over their circumstances? >> the child is not penalized at all. this is all a cash payment to the families. >> but, sir, you're placing responsibility for the family qualifying for this money on the back of the child. on the back of the child's ability to pass the grade and go into the next grade. what i'm asking you, sir, is how is a child of age 5 supposed to carry that burden for the family's finances when the child has no control over the circumstances in which its living? that child to be the victim of abuse, violence five minutes before they leave home. they have no control over that. >> there's no way -- listen, if you're saying stacey, find a way to solve all abuse problems -- >> no, sir. sir, i'm not asking you that. what i'm asking you, sir, to answer is this question. is it fair to expect a child of
5 to be responsible for their academic performance when they cannot control anything else in their lives? and as you well know, sir, the circumstances of a child's life influences that child's performance at school. >> we have -- actually, we already put performance levels on the child for how teachers get paid, how schools get reimbur reimbursed. the only person who has no responsibility for the performance of the child is the parents. >> do you have children yourself? >> no. i have about as many children as barack obama has guns. so no. yet he still brings legislation regarding that. so i have no problem with that. he has a right to do that just like i have a right -- >> senator, i'm not casting any aspersions on the fact that you don't have children but i was merely going to put this point to you. do you realize how difficult it is for parents to guarantee their child's academic performance? i mean, george h.w. bush had a son called george w. bush and his academic per pormance was
mediocre and he had every single opportunity and support imaginable. do you realize how difficult it is for any parent to be able to guarantee a child's academic performance? >> we're talking bare minimums. like i said, i don't want these kids to be rocket scientists. passing up to the next grade is not too high a standard to say, listen, if your kid shows up to school at 11:00 in his pajamas, that kid is not prepared to go to school. families have to take a responsibility for having the kids prepared to go to school. >> senator, i understand your position on parents and you already penalize parents in the way you do. what i'm asking you again is is it will fair to place the burden of this on a 5-year-old child who 15 minutes before attending school may have been violently assaulted by someone who lives in the home in which they live? how can it possibly be their responsibility to guarantee that
they can achieve certain standards academically when you know -- >> it's not. >> when you know that no parent can absolutely guarantee a child's academic performance. i can't -- >> it is not, but the family has the hugest impact, more so than teachers, than schools. the family have the hugest impact. yes, if you're a bad parent who is abusing your child, guess what? that kid is going to do badly. i would hope they wouldn't abuse the child so the child would do better and then no payments would be cut. >> so just so we understand it, thank you for your admission. so what you're now accepting is that if a child has been badly abused and doesn't do very well at school academically, the family will suffer regardless. >> i'm not making that admission but go ahead. >> senator campfield, i'd love to have more time but i'm afraid we've run out. thank you for joining us tooted. >> thanks for having me. had a great time. >> thank you, sir. i should let you know we posted the full interview with senator campfield on your facebook page and on our show page at
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can the republican party save itself from its own members? it's a question we're all asking after our interview just a moment ago with state senator stacey campfield of tennessee. his big idea for ending poverty is to heap even more hardship on the poor. is this really what the grand old party stands for? let's bring in goldie taylor. the republicans have an image problem at's gotten so bad even they have become aware of it. let's hear from that paragon of statesmanship, louisiana governor bobby jindal. >> we've got to stop being the stupid party. i'm serious, it's time for a new republican party that talks like adults. >> goldie, we just heard that from state senator from
tennessee. isn't that exactly the kind of thing that bobby jindal is talking about, stupid? >> you know, i think it is, but, you know, the difficulty here is that i don't know that mr. campfield has bad intentions so much as he is acting on a nascent understanding of how poverty actually operates, the real structures of poverty. he's right about one thing, public education is a three-legged stool and when one of the legs is broken, it does not stand. it's the teacher, the parent, and the child but when you have a parent in the situation, and this wasn't raised during the interview, when the parent has an eighth grade education, when the parent didn't complete high school let alone go on to college -- >> or one of the parents may be in jail. >> or maybe one of the parents is absent and in jail, then that parent is incapable -- >> right. >> -- of fully engaging in public education in a meaningful way. you understand that i raised my children on welfare. food stamps, what used to be afd c and child care grants that
helped me to put -- get great care for my kids. today because i was an involved parent because i had an education and went back to get an education myself, i have a child who is a senior at brown university who is going to graduate with honors. a son studying architecture in california who is going to graduate with high honors. it's not simply about whether or not abuse is present but whether or not a parent has, you know, has the means to make that investment. but it goes further than that. you know, i can talk all day about whether or not republican policies are going to be the right fit for fixing poverty in this country. but the fact of the matter is both parties are on the hook for what has been a disastrous social engineering project that's happened in our communities over decades. >> but, goldie, what is your reaction to this individual who
is proposing legislation so that children as young as 5, if they do not perform at a certain academic standard, will end up costing their entire family 30% of much-needed assistance that will result in them not being able to eat as much as they could were they to receive that money? that's the specific legislative attempt by this individual state senator. what's your reaction to that as a strategy? >> you know, i remember him saying something about how if that grant were cut, that grant were cut by $60 a month it would not impact the child. well, then where does the gas money come from that the parent is actually looking for work? where does the gas money come from when this parent wants to apply to go to, say, community college? every dime of that very small check gets used on housing, it gets used on child care, it gets used on gasoline, it gets used on shoes. and let me just tell you, you can't buy toilet paper with food
stamps. this stuff is very, very basic, and so when you have people like mr. campbell making sort of these wholesale assumptions about what happens inside these social programs and what it takes to break the confines of, you know, structural poverty, that's some dangerous stuff. but he isn't new to this. this has been going on for literally decades. social welfare drove men out of households through the '60s and '70s. for instance, black families used to be an intact family unit until social welfare came along and made it almost impossible for a black father to remain home and for this family to get the help that it needs to break the cycle of poverty. and so i think there is a larger conversation that has to go on here if you are treating the symptoms such as a child not doing so well in school rather than attacking the root causes, you're going to lose every time. >> goldie taylor, as always,
thank you so much, goldie. and congratulations on the wonderful family that you yourself have parented. >> thanks for having me, martin. >> we'll be right back. i'm up next, but now i'm singing the heartburn blues. hold on, prilosec isn't for fast relief. cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. ♪ oh what a relief it is!